Modern Architecture Thrives On One Of The Oldest Roads In America

At FEH, we are always saying, “Nothing is as old as dirt”. Now that may not be the best sounding grammar, but the adage is true nonetheless. So when we caught wind of a story that our friend’s at 6sqft recently covered on architect, Sharon Davis and the design of her personal home on one of our nation’s most historic roads we just couldn’t resist sharing it. Sharon is principal of of the New York based design firm, Sharon Davis Design, where their ethos is to design extraordinary buildings that alter the future of the community and the folks that live in them.

Photo by: Elizabeth Felicella

Sharon bought her 3-acre property in Garrison, New York twenty years ago to save the land from development and recently completed the property renovation. The home is located on Old Albany Post Road, which is a 6.6 mile dirt road that runs into Garrison and is one of the oldest unpaved roads  still in use today. The history of the road dates back to the mid-17th century and was the path between what we know now as Albany and New York City. Old Albany Post Road provided for movement of troops, supplies and postal mail during the French and Indian and Revolutionary War. The road retains landscape features from Colonial times and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1982.

Photo by: Elizabeth Felicella

When it came to designing her new home, Sharon wanted to be respectful of her historic surroundings while also creating a cozy, but luxurious modern space. The property itself is about 900 square feet, but feels open and airy due to the thoughtful design by Sharon. The existing structure on the property was the foundation for her design. While the front of the facade is in harmony with the home’s existing historic surroundings, the two-story ultra-modern addition on the back of the home has retractable floor to ceiling windows that allow for the outdoors to come into the space beautifully. The interior design of the space incorporates many recycled and salvaged materials including re-claimed pine and oak and local bluestone slabs incorporated in the exterior stairs and walkways. Energy efficiency was also a priority for Sharon so she incorporated soy-based spray foam in the walls and geothermal heating and cooling to reduce the environmental impact of this small, yet impeccably designed space.

One of our favorite design aesthetics is combining old with new and in our opinion, Sharon’s design knocks it out of the park. From the front facade of this home you may not think that the home is modern, but once inside the juxtaposition of old to new is quite the surprise and a feast for ones eyes.  For more on this great renovation story visit our friends at 6sqft.

All of the photos used in this post are with the permission of the photographer, Elizabeth Felicella. To see more of Elizabeth’s work explore her portfolio.

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